Human Services Guide

Social Science Major

If you are interested in joining the Human Services workforce then you will want to look into an education as a social science major. There are many directions you can go in the social sciences. From Psychology, to Social Work to Sociology or even a broader degree in Human Services there are many different routes one can take as a social science major. The social sciences are brought together by their common thread of the study of humanity in all its myriad forms. There are many reasons to study the social sciences, but all seem to involve a curiosity around the behavior of people as individuals, as groups, societies and even entire cultures. This curiosity is sometimes coupled with a desire to help one’s fellow human beings due to an inborn pull towards service. As a social science major you will learn about why people behave in the manner they do. From personal familial conditioning to the macro forces of history, culture, birth place and current residence. So many factors sculpt the behavior of human beings; you will discover that as a Human Services professional whose education is that of a social science major, the key trait to cultivate is that of compassion. Being compassionate when dealing with your fellow human beings will help you to relate to them and bridge gaps in generation, culture and even language.

The social science major has many career options available to them as understanding human beings helps one in almost any sector of the economy. However, a social science major is particularly equipped to join the Human Services sector and thrive. By gathering the baseline knowledge of human behavior, you will be prepared to interact with and help your fellow people at a very high level. Through empathy, compassion and understanding we gain insight into the needs of our fellow people and can then see how to empower people so they can not only survive any current crisis, but also eventually thrive with a renewed sense of self-sufficiency. As a social science major you will learn just how powerful culture and society is in shaping the lens through which individuals view reality. Some anthropologists will argue that culture is such a powerful influence on the human psyche that it almost creates the individual’s reality out of whole cloth. While certain things such as gravity and other physical phenomena might be experienced in a universal way, the interpretations of those experiences are as varied as the grains of sand on a beach. No other factor is so powerful in shaping experience than culture and language which are inextricably intertwined.

Due to the power of culture and language, it is a very wise idea as a social science major to look at adding a minor in a foreign language or languages as your minor emphasis. By learning a foreign language you gain the first foothold into understanding the culture of another person. There is also a certain rapport that is established right away when someone from another culture finds someone who speaks their language. The palpable relief of an individual living in a foreign land who hears their own language is something unique. Anyone who has travelled abroad knows how wonderful it is to find someone who speaks your language.

Regardless of your final career goals, gaining an education as a social science major will prepare you to have a uniquely insightful perspective on your fellow human beings. This type of educational background will serve you well in almost any sector of the economy, but it is particularly useful if you plan on entering a career as a Human Services professional. As you research potential educational routes as a social science major it is helpful to consider your career goals and plan your education accordingly. If you are uncertain as to your long range career plans, a social science major can actually be extremely useful for understanding your own outlook on the world, that of others and finding a niche which resonates with you.